Frequently Asked Questions
- Is it possible for tandem skydiving to be less expensive?
- How safe is tandem skydiving at Skydive Newport?
- Why choose Skydive Newport to make your tandem skydive?
- How long does the training take?
- What does freefall feel like?
- How about weather conditions?
- Are you a United States Parachute Association (USPA) Group Member Dropzone?
- What should I wear?
- Can I bring my own GoPro/camera/cell phone on my jump?
- Where can I stay in Newport?
- Can anybody jump who is under 18 years old?
- Is there a weight limit to jump?
- How about gratuities?
- How much in advance to I need to schedule a skydive?
- Can I bring along spectators?
- How much sooner should I (we) come out prior to the scheduled reservation?
Is it possible for tandem skydiving to be less expensive?
There may be some skydiving locations that offer rates that appear to be lower than the standard tandem skydiving rates in New England, often times to an amount below the Jump center’s actual cost to make that jump. There are a number of likely reasons for that:
First, you may be fooled into thinking you are getting a reasonable amount of freefall at what Skydive Newport considers an uncomfortable altitude for tandem operations. When those centers exit at lower altitudes, they do it to save themselves time and fuel (money). The downside for YOU is that it significantly reduces your freefall, gives you a poor experience, and puts your safety at risk. We take make our jumps from 10,000 feet, the universal safe standard in New England.
Secondly: Many discount jump centers forgo routine maintenance of gear and aircraft to cut costs. That is something that should be of a real concern, and something you should consider while choosing where to make your jump. Skydive Newport is proud to offer you the newest technology and the most well maintained aircraft and parachute equipment. We are proud of our impeccable safety record, and a big reason for that is because we maintain all our equipment flawlessly and pay our people properly. Our staff members are highly trained and are second to none in the industry. They have vast experience in their field (many thousands of jumps), and are dedicated to giving you a safe, amazing, and memorable experience from beginning to end. This safety involves a multitude of costs, and we refuse to cut corners when it comes to providing the absolute best and safest experience available.
Third, some centers have resorted to using skydiving booking services and “deal of the day” websites out there that offer cut rate prices to fill their aircraft when they can’t do so themselves. The fact is that after the hidden charges they surprise you with on jump day (gear rental fees, aircraft fees, fuel surcharges, etc) and their inferior skydiving locations, you will likely have less than a desirable experience with them and often end up spending more. Don’t get us wrong, we believe that there are CERTAIN things that those “deal of the day” websites are good for! Comedy shows, Sushi dates, and Spa treatments to name a few. Other things, such as Lasik Eye Surgery, Tattoos, Heart Surgery, and yes.. especially Skydiving.. aren’t. Safety is paramount in this industry, and a parachute center simply cannot operate safely on those margins. Do your research on any parachute center offering the “deal of the day”, and read their reviews and history. You will see what we mean.
Skydive Newport’s pricing is competitive in the industry and region, especially given the amazing view and wonderful safety record. We always strive to keep the cost as realistic, reasonable, and honest as possible with NO hidden cost or surcharges.
How safe is tandem skydiving at Skydive Newport?
Skydive Newport has an impeccable safety record. We use state of the art equipment, and maintain our gear and aircraft to the highest standards. All our staff members are United States Parachute Association (USPA) certified and have many thousands of jumps and many years of experience in the sport; They are highly trained. (You may be in greater danger driving your car).
Why choose Skydive Newport to make your tandem skydive?
We are very pleased to have a location that allows us to jump over all of Newport’s Coastline (which includes the beaches and Narragansett Bay); we are also three and a half miles from downtown Newport (loaded with tons of shops and waterfront restaurants) and two miles from the Newport beaches. Our safety record, customer service, and efficenty are miles ahead of others, and our prices are competitive with NO hidden charges or hidden fees.
How long does the training take?
The training takes less than half an hour of preparation followed by boarding the aircraft with your instructors. The time it takes to jump also depends on the size of the group: we will give you a more accurate time frame when you call.
What does freefall feel like?
Freefall is not the “roller coaster drop” feeling most people expect it would be. It is a comfortable sensation of floating and support, with a slight pressure of air against your body.
How about weather conditions?
Skydiving is a weather sensitive sport. We can only jump if conditions are acceptable, i.e. cloud clearance, no rain, tolerable winds. Be advised that weather can be different within a few miles distance, and can change very quickly. Please call if you are in question of the weather on your reservation date. We try to keep you informed about the weather if you call. Weather forecasts are not always correct, and we have many years experience jumping in this area. We make the call if the weather is safe or not to jump.
Are you a United States Parachute Association (USPA) Group Member Dropzone?
Yes we are a United States Parachute Association Group Member Dropzone. This is important because USPA Group Member DZs have pledged that they will follow the Basic Safety Recommendations (BSRs) set forth by that organization. Dropzones that will not commit to USPA membership are not necessarily unsafe, but they are refusing to pledge that they will follow the BSRs and should be avoided.
What should I wear?
Dress with comfortable clothing such as shorts, T-shirts, sweaters, jeans, and sneakers. No sandals or flip-flops please. We often plan to slide in a seated position for the landing, so your attire should be something you don’t mind possibly getting a little dirty or a minor grass stain. During early Spring and late Fall it tends to be chilly, so bring a pair of gloves and maybe a fleece or sweatshirt to wear under your jumpsuit; otherwise, we provide you with goggles for the jump, and gloves and jumpsuit if necessary. Glasses or contact lenses are ok.
Can I bring my own GoPro/camera/cell phone on my jump?
Recently, we have noticed an increased interest by our students to bring their own cameras with them on their skydive. Skydive Newport cannot allow this for a variety of reasons.. the first reason is safety. You or your instructor may be hit with a camera carried in freefall, causing possible injury. Because we are falling at speeds of 120 mph, and any projectile that may dislodge from a mount at that speed is very dangerous. Our camera equipment has been specially designed and modified to be skydiving friendly, and the instructor has extensive experience in safely operating that equipment. The second reason is one of liability. Should the camera be dropped, bumped, or fall away for any reason, everyone below is at risk. Anything dropped from that altitude (even the lightest of equipment) is extremely hazardous. We regularly jump over highly populated areas, and we are not willing to put those below at risk, nor have to answer to the FAA as to why a camera went through someone’s windshield. The third reason lies in the fact that our instructors have been highly trained in how to film in freefall and during the canopy ride, and are much more likely to produce a product that positively and accurately reflects your jump. The sensory overload on one’s first jump can be a bit overwhelming, and being able to catch the angles and lighting takes great practice and skill. Our instructors are as much photographers as they are instructors!
You and your family/friends are more than welcome to bring your own cameras for on-the-ground fiming/photography before and after the jump, but please do not attempt to bring one onto our aircraft. You will not be allowed to jump with it.
Where can I stay in Newport?
Newport has a variety of motels and hotels. If you are in search of a luxurious, enchanting, and colonial Newport Mansion for bed and breakfast, then please visit an even “Last Minute Availability” with the Francis Malbone House. You may also look under www.GoNewport.com and www.Newportchamber.com.
Can anybody jump who is under 18 years old?
Unfortunately, you must be at least 18 years old to legally jump in the state of Rhode Island. There are no exceptions, and we cannot take parental-signed consents. Be prepared to show I.D. if you are under the age of 21.
Is there a weight limit to jump?
Our weight limit is 240 pounds which is the absolute maximum. Anybody over that limit will be refused. We also reserve the right to turn away people who have a very high weight to height ratio, (for example, 220 pounds with a height of 5’2”).
How about gratuities?
Gratuities are not required. Our staff is paid well; however, if you feel that you would like to add some gratuity, that’s perfectly acceptable and well appreciated.
How much in advance do I have to schedule a skydive?
We recommend to schedule a tandem skydive a week in advance. Depending on the season, it is possible to make an appointment 1-2 day(s) prior to jump. Sometimes you are able to jump the same day you call.
Can I bring along spectators?
Yes, by all means! We do have a wonderful landing and spectator area, so your family and friends can watch your entire jump. There are picnic tables set up alongside the landing area for all of those who wish to watch the jumpers, and restrooms for their use. It should be noted that we are VERY punctual with our reservations, so your family/friends must arrive at the same time as you do, or very shortly thereafter. We cannot delay your takeoff/jump time if your friends or family are late.
How much sooner should I (we) come out prior to the scheduled reservation?
As mentioned above, PUNCTUALITY is a MUST. We are a very efficient operation, but that relies on honoring our reservation times. If you or your group is late, we cannot infringe on reservations after you; thus you and/or your group may not be able to jump due to time limitations. We recommend to show up half an hour before your scheduled time: Paper work, briefing, and short a training before the jump will typically take up 30 minutes. Please keep in mind that peak season (July-Sept) tends to be tourist season, and very busy on the island. Beach traffic and congestion can often extend the travel time you or your group experiences considerably, so please plan your travel time accordingly.